Definition of locomotive in English:

locomotive

noun

  • A powered railway vehicle used for pulling trains.

    as modifier ‘a diesel locomotive’
    • ‘This enabled the order to be kept down to just four locomotives.’
    • ‘The railway locomotive and the large steam-powered factory were the most spectacular products of the steam age.’
    • ‘They are railway locomotives, fireplaces, church towers, cannons and benches.’
    • ‘Christmas is heading this way like a speeding locomotive.’
    • ‘His main interest is the steam locomotives and railways of many countries.’
    • ‘One switchman handles both locomotives, that is he takes one out while the other is loading and so on.’
    • ‘Except this time, the bug was a large helicopter gunship and the car was a speeding diesel locomotive.’
    • ‘The cars were pulled across by horses and picked up by locomotives at both ends.’
    • ‘There were also employees responsible for the locomotives themselves, the drivers, the firemen and the cleaners.’
    • ‘There were at least nineteen designs from ten builders, and one from a consortium, but no locomotives were ever built!’
    • ‘Guests and passengers were treated to a trip along the five-mile line pulled by the historic locomotive.’
    • ‘I noticed that the southbound train did have only two locomotives, but it didn't seem to be a problem.’
    • ‘An exhibition of locomotives and rolling stock drew crowds to York's old station.’
    • ‘The use of light locomotives on the estate railways became more widespread after the First World War.’
    • ‘The world's most famous steam locomotive is symbolic of British industry, innovation and engineering.’
    • ‘It said a shortage of locomotives would damage Germany's ability to transport enough troops, supplies and weapons to battle.’
    • ‘The locomotives and the oil tank wagons were built in China and are powered by British-manufactured engines.’
    • ‘The first electric locomotive was demonstrated in Berlin in 1879.’
    • ‘The heights and widths of all cement railcars and locomotives were determined.’
    • ‘He does some other weird stuff then like knock people over using chi, and pull a railway locomotive along by cables attached to huge piercings right through his biceps, insane but not as miraculous as the electrical stuff.’
    rolling stock, trains, locomotives, carriages, wagons
    View synonyms

adjective

  • 1attributive Relating to or effecting locomotion.

    ‘locomotive power’
    • ‘Enunciating clearly made her lose her train of thought, and if you can't have a locomotive discussion, she thought guiltily, what's the point?’
    • ‘It would be more than five years later, after the ‘Tom Thumb’ experiments, that steam locomotive technology would secure the company's success.’
    • ‘Thus substantial space is devoted, for example, to railroads in the Civil War and to the development of locomotive power in the era from 1865 to 1900.’
    • ‘You must avoid the attack by using the speed of locomotive power.’
    • ‘With the growth in the economy, the locomotive capacity has to be increased.’
    • ‘They manned mighty tractors, equal to compound locomotive power and had the lands deeply plowed… Crop failures were no more.’
    • ‘As the rocket scientists watched it boing away easily across the uneven, rugged terrain, they realized that an inflatable ball was a superb locomotive design.’
    • ‘We prefer to use our own locomotive prowess to enjoy the countryside in all its peace and quiet and natural beauty.’
    • ‘‘As people get older their locomotive abilities give up before vision and if they become confined to one room vision and hearing become relatively more important,’ he said.’
    • ‘Consequently, locomotive failure or broken bones can occur in older females, particularly those that were not developed properly as replacement gilts.’
    • ‘It seems that Bradford was at the cutting edge of locomotive technology in those experimental years before the First World War and would be a very interesting story.’
    • ‘That steam locomotive technology had climaxed at about the time the Depression started is is evidenced in the requirements for a college degree in mechanical engineering.’
    • ‘Without knowing the total amount of power being expended to accelerate both the locomotive and train, a reasonable estimate of locomotive power cannot be obtained.’
    1. 1.1archaic (of a machine, vehicle, or animal) having the power of progressive motion.
      ‘locomotive bivalves have the strongest hinges’
      travelling, transportable, transferable, portable, movable, manoeuvrable
      View synonyms

Origin

Early 17th century (as an adjective): from modern Latin locomotivus, from Latin loco (ablative of locus ‘place’) + late Latin motivus ‘motive’, suggested by medieval Latin in loco moveri ‘move by change of position’.

Pronunciation

locomotive

/ləʊkəˈməʊtɪv/